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Solar street lights ! Great opportunity for tax-payers money

By August 17, 2015 180 Views No comments

With over 29 million streetlights in the United States, and an annual budget of more than $2.5 billion in energy alone, street lighting is one of the main area where budgetary and environmental efforts should be made. Most of the street lights installed in the US are currently owned by the private sector and lease directly to end-user or local government entities.

With the recent advanced in LED technology (towards more efficient power to light ratio) and combined with the increased efficiency of solar panels observed in the recent years(Available chart of increased efficiency of solar cells: NREL Data Chart ) , solar-powered street lights are an increasingly viable alternative to regular high pressure sodium lamps powered by the grid electricity.

Solar street lights have already been installed all over the world for the past 20 years, and have proven to be a judicious alternative choice to regular HPS street lights, for any outdoor lighting application ranging from parking lots, parks, highways, roads airports, general area lighting...

Despite a higher upfront cost for the solar LED solution, environment and cost savings are significant over the lifetime of the solar street lights, considering all the aspect of the maintenance and potential electronic failure (Electric cots, maintenance costs....).

Material cost is significantly higher, as the electricity will be produced on-site by the solar panels, and the battery cost also accounts for a significant part of the system. Using LED fixture is necessary for an entirely solar-powered lighting solution, as they are the most electricity-saving lighting option currently on the market.

Depending on the specific installation location, savings can also be made on the installation cost. If the solar lights are to be installed on a parking lot, that has already been paved, and where the electrical wiring is deteriorated, installing a solar-powered solution will be significantly less costly, as the entire re-wiring and trenching of the parking lot can be avoided. Installation in location that do not have sufficient access to the power-grid will also benefit from the choice of a solar solution. We have seen some trenching and metering cost going as high as $100 per foot, when the average cost is usually around $30-$50.